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Mar 18, 2016

Michael's New Shirt + A Viking Mystery



Michael has a new shirt for spring.  I love the Easter egg-y pastel palette!

While not officially Liberty of London, this fabric does resemble Liberty's Wiltshire print, only the design on my shirt is less literal, more abstract.  I actually like it better! 

Below are some close ups.  Michael didn't have time to model it today, but soon. 

The collar is lined with solid gray cotton, as are the inside cuffs.  I was considering something bolder, like a small check, but I think the pattern is busy enough.  A solid inside collar gives the eye a place to rest and frames the neck in a flattering way.  I used medium gray thread throughout.







The back has two small tucks on either side.



The buttons are light gray plastic.  As you can see, the shirt has a front button placket.  I don't always add one.



I'm very happy with the way it turned out.  The fabric was particularly easy to work with -- no pattern matching and a crisp hand.

Meanwhile, I've owned a Viking sewing machine, model 3240, for more than six years.  It works well, though it's a little beat up.  I don't sew with it very much, but I do use it to wind all of my bobbins.  It's always out and ready to use.

I love that it doesn't have one of those "fingers" that decides when the bobbin is full; I can wind the bobbins as full as I want them.  Since I generally use large spools of thread when I sew, I wind bobbins for both top and bottom thread.  (Large spools can't fit on home sewing machines.)  I end up winding a lot of bobbins.





The Viking bobbin winder can accommodate any size bobbin.  You don't need to turn the machine on or off (if it's plugged in, it's on), nor do you have to disengage the hand wheel to wind a bobbin.  As soon as you slip a bobbin on the winder, the needle automatically disengages.  So easy.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago, our building upgraded two electrical outlets in our kitchen, which is where I generally sew these days. The new ones have little green lights and circuit breakers.  Well, wouldn't you know my Viking blows the circuit every other time I use it.  I have to wait a few minutes, then press the button on the outlet to reset the circuit -- annoying.



So I've started winding my bobbins on my Bernina 930.  It's easy enough to use, but it has one of those annoying fingers that tells you when the bobbin is full.  To my eye the bobbins never end up more than 3/4 full.  So I have to wind the my bobbins more frequently.  I suppose that "finger" thing may be adjustable.  Worth looking into.

My bigger question is why my Viking, which is a 1 amp machine and which has never given me problems in the past, is now blowing the circuits.  It's not just the one outlet either, it does it on the other one that was installed too.  My only option is to move the machine elsewhere, but there aren't many elsewheres in my apartment that make sense.  Any idea why this might be happening?

Readers, that's it!  Lots of sewing ahead this weekend, along with a special sewing-related treat I'll be sharing next week.

Have a great day, everybody, and happy sewing!

20 comments:

  1. Peter, please have the machine checked out. There is a reason your Viking is triggering the new GFI outlet. Here’s a definition from the US Consumer Product Safety Commission:

    A ground fault is an unintentional electrical path between a power source and a grounded surface. Ground faults most often occur when equipment is damaged or defective, such that live electrical parts are no longer adequately protected from unintended contact.

    The shirt looks great. I love the crisp collar and cuffs. Can’t wait to see it on Michael.

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  2. I heartily agree with all of Roberta's comments.

    As to the electrical issue, given the age of the machine and a lack of history I'd hazard a guess that the coverings on some of the wiring are compromised. Don't know how costs run around there but a total rewiring oughtn't be unreasonably expensive; it's hard to beat those older Vikings and I'd not hesitate to put a bit of money into it. Furthermore, fires are very expensive on many levels!

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  3. I love my newest shirt and can't wait to wear it and model it!

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    1. Looking forward to seeing you in the shirt, Michael. Very nice colors for you! You are fortunate to have your own custom shirtmaker. :)

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  4. Peter, my husband is a Master Electrician and he says you have a ground fault issue in your machine. The new GFI outlet is doing its job to save your life. You run the risk of being electrocuted if you would ground yourself to something that is grounded to earth (say a water pipe or something) while you were using it and that's what the GFI is protection for. I hope this helps.

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    1. Thanks, Sueann. I think it's time to get rid of that machine. It's falling apart anyway and it has already made back what I paid for it (used) many times over. Thanks for the help!

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    2. Hey Peter: My husband just reiterated this. And, I know you know this, but don't put it out on the street without a sign that signals the potential ground fault. Maybe best to just throw it away given that, if someone doesn't take it seriously, they could get hurt.

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  5. Not that this solves anything, but I'm pretty sure that cord that's plugged into the outlet is not original to the machine. If you do get rid of it, you might miss that low gear one day.

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    1. Great to hear from you, Debbie! That's not the Viking plug, that's my Bernina plug. I've already unplugged the Viking as it's no longer usable.

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  6. Ditto all of the above. There's a reason a lot of old machines should be retired...
    Kris

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  7. Peter for a very few shekels you can buy a Sew Easy Cone holder - a gizmo that is a weighted base with a stick sticking up with a thing that looks like a villain's moutaschio on top, that you can pop behnd you machine, put the big cone on, then run the thread around the thread spike of the machine and thread as usual. Genius! Here's a link so you know what I am talking about, they're bound to have something similar in your neck of the woods: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Hemline-Double-Holder-Threads-Machines/dp/B0089E40NW

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  8. I see MrsC(Maryanne)beat me to suggesting a large cone holder for your vintage machines. Since you are within skipping distance for sewing notions galore, I'm sure you can pick one up for a song in NY. Otherwise, here is a US link for one similar to what I use: http://www.amazon.com/Universal-Single-Adjustable-Embroidery-Machines/dp/B00W2GQJSM/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1458408156&sr=8-2&keywords=large+cone+thread+holder Love your posts!

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  9. Awwww! I was waiting to see Michael in the shirt! I love to see him model the shirts you make! They are always so spot on! Mike-ul Mike-ul Mike-ul (synced claps!) LOL!!

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  10. I ended up getting a separate bobbin winder gadget (Simplicity Side Winder) and have really liked it. It goes a bit fast on AC power so I prefer using rechargeable batteries, so that the tension isn't too tight. It winds them quite full (too fat to fit into my vintage Singers) but I second the suggestion of a thread cone holder, which I use often.

    the shirt looks great!

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  11. when I use cone thread I put it in a large glass jar and with a safety pin on the thread spool, I direct the thread through the end of the safety pin and into the threading slots. Haven't had a problem yet. I got the idea of using cone thread or serger thread from you and it has solved a lot of the problems I had with thread on my computer machine which moves much faster than my usual thread can handle. But then I read online that I shouldn't sew with serger thread because it is too weak for garments. OyVey, I wish I was back in the 60s when you could find good thread!!

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  12. Test the cord before trashing the machine.
    (hubby's a sparky)

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  13. beautiful shirt. Michael will look great in it. I use an Alpha Sew Universal Thread Holder for larger cones of thread. works great for me

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  14. Love the shirt! It turned out great, and I think you are right about the gray. :)

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  15. The shirt is really beautiful; I love your trick of using contrast fabric, and am going to try it myself next time I make a shirt. The closest I've got so far is cutting the inside cuffs on the bias in checked fabric for a shirt for my brother, which worked really nicely for a subtle decorative touch.

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  16. Be bold, get a screwdriver and open that machine up. I mean it's not like you'll void the warranty if you do. It may be something obvious like crumbling insulation or a loose connection. What about Rain? Is he still around and working on machines yet?

    Nice work on the shirt.

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